I haven’t had a clear thought since April. Tens of thousands of muddy ones tumbling in, but they all have the be washed and polished, sorted by size and weight. Takes forever. Poetry helps. You don’t have to know what you’re thinking to start writing it. Even when you’re done it’s often just a bunch of stones lined up in a mystery you hope someone else solves later and it’s not too embarrassing.

It has been five weeks since the last tiny sliver of Lexapro. I was spared the most terrifying withdrawal side effects. No brain zaps, waking up behind the wheel of the car in strange places with no idea how you got there. Just a very slow, anti-climactic re-entry into consciousness. I can officially spend more hours awake than asleep in a 24 hour period, and far fewer of them are spent crying in the kitchen. But I have awakened under the wet blanket of midsummer. Time is sticky and hot and slow and sounds like cicadas and children who have spilled paint.

I am here, I am well, I am raising children and inking pens and doing stupid things with my body that I really should not. There is plenty of writing being done, but none that wants to be seen when the lights come on. I am here, everything is right here just waiting for my head to clear, waiting for the year to tip toward fall so gravity can take over.

Until then, I am just here in the stands with my box of rocks, breathing chlorine, cheering, moving stuff around.

Thirty five.

To become like a child
like my child
like I was as a child
before I was ruined
spoiled by trying

when I came unaware of the grease on
my dress and the words I did not
when I came gaping and rude
with inappropriate questions and
groping hands
when I had no reason to think I
would not be satisfied with
when no part of me thought I should not
crawl right in and make myself at

All this time I expected to wake up
standing in the Presence like someone in the know.

I forgot what I was doing.
Never was that the path.
Never was that the promise.
Wrong way.